Why I am surprised about this, I should have known. But I have been brainwashed under the digital marketing system.
How important is a solid referral and from where does it originate?
- A referral from a prominent player is worth its weight in gold. It nearly negates your marketing effort to reach those with whom you wish to connect and work. It eliminates that front end effort and you simply have to illustrate how capable you are to the client upon meeting them and finding out their 'issue' or 'problem' and show them how valuable you are: efficient, understand the situation, make sound recommendations, demonstrate your expertise, etc.
- Who is that 'prominent player'? He/she is typically your existing or previous client with whom you rocked big time - you made them feel like No. 1, you were attentive, accommodating, timely, and delivered a quality product or service. You are still very good friends with them, have enjoyed a few wins, they have made a good profit using your services, they regard you as a totally reliable resource. And they will continue to refer you as long as you make the new client happy on all counts.
- In the same way effective person to person referrals can land jobs/work for you, a quality backlink will at best raise your exposure online. I think the most important aspect about SEO is the quality backlink. The more prominent the source of the backlink, the more likely you will raise your visibility in SERPs and put you higher on the page for your search terms. They are the next best thing to a personal referral and must be sought. Of course, for a quality backlink, YOUR content needs to be valuable and unique. That's just how it works. Getting known as an 'expert' through publication, awards, blogging, etc. is the fastest way to get a backlink. You can negotiate reciprocal links as well. The art of getting backlinks is the subject of another blog! (here are some of the latest pointers: https://www.searchenginejournal.com/on-serp-seo/
- In real-time, the human referral means a more immediate connection and likelihood of a signed contract. If that is the case, wouldn't it behoove us to strive for the former in the best way we can, while working on the latter as a backup marketing method. NOT THE OTHER WAY AROUND. This goes back to the digital brainwashing I think to which we have all succumbed: put it online, juice it up, and they will come. I think every avenue of getting your name out is worth pursuing. What works best and what does not?